Elena Georgieva October 8th, 2016

The World Bank Group’s Partnership Framework for Bulgaria

Bulgaria has the potential to achieve EU living standards within this generation. The emergence of a young, energetic, and indigenous private sector successfully competing internationally demonstrates the potential of Bulgaria’s economy that has not yet been fully realized,” said Tony Thompson, World Bank Group (WBG) Country Manager for Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, and Slovakia during an event with the Bulgarian Professionals Club on October 4, 2016.
Mr. Thompson presented the WBG’s new Country Partnership Framework (CPF) for Bulgaria for 2017-2022. The World Bank has supported Bulgaria’s transformation into a democratic and modern society for the past 20 years. The CPF, adopted in May 2016, aims at strengthening institutions in Bulgaria for sustainable growth, while investing in its people. The strategy also marks the first new lending operation in Bulgaria since 2010. Informed by the Systematic Country Diagnostic for Bulgaria, the CPF identified three transformational areas for sustainable growth and shared prosperity in the country: strengthening the institutional and legal governance framework; boosting the skills and employability of the population; and improving the effectiveness and efficiency of public spending.
A series of consultations, which took place across the country, helped shape the CPF. This allowed representatives from the World Bank to listen to all stakeholders and learn about their challenges and future aspirations. A visual walk-through of the in-country consultations held in preparation for the CPF is available on the World Bank’s website.
The partnership will be reviewed every two years to assess progress and recalibrate specific objectives and activities in light of developments and changing priorities. For the first two years, the partnership will focus on two areas: strengthening institutions for sustainable growth and investing in people.
Under the first area, the CPF objectives are to improve the financial, energy, and natural resources sectors. The program includes two lending instruments in support of the Bulgarian Deposit Insurance Fund and the National Program for Residential Energy Efficiency for a total amount of EUR 550 million.

The second focus area, namely investing in people, reflects the shared commitment by the government and the World Bank to ensure that the benefits of economic growth reach all Bulgarians and provide an opportunity for everyone to contribute to the country’s prosperity. The WBG will build on a long-standing engagement in human development in Bulgaria, spanning education, health, employment, social protection and social inclusion of marginalized communities, especially the Roma.